Drinking Away Your Problems: The Importance of Staying Hydrated
In an extreme survival situation, you can go three weeks without food, but only three days without water. That says something about how vital water is to your body. Weighing in at approximately 60% water, your body only has to lose 1% for the effects to start showing within your cardio system. When you’re exercising, and pushing your body to the limit, adequate hydration is key.
Water for Fitness
The 60% water in your body performs many tasks and function. When properly hydrated, the plasma in your blood is 92% water and as your blood carries nutrients, oxygen and energy around your body, you need that to be working effectively when you’re working out. Water also helps to regulate your body temperature, and aids enzyme processes which heal and repair your body and help you to sleep well. These are all vital processes after a hard workout.
The American Council on Exercise has some good advice on quantities of water to drink before, during, and after exercise to make sure that you are properly hydrated. If you’re a serious athlete you might want to weigh in and measure more accurately how much fluid you need to replace; and if you’ve been exercising for more than an hour, you need to be replacing carbohydrates and electrolytes too.
Water for Life
Making sure that you are well hydrated has a positive impact on your general health and wellbeing. Most headaches and cases of fatigue can be improved with a drink of water. Your body uses water to help rid itself of toxins in the skin and keep it more elastic – this helps your skin to look clearer and younger. Flushing through your system with plenty of H2O aids your bladder and kidneys to get rid of nasty bacteria or infections, and also helps your joints and cartilage to repair properly. If you’re doing heavy exercise on tough surfaces, you want to look after your bones. Drinking plenty is also a good habit to ensure that you look after your health later in life – older people are six times more likely to be in hospital for dehydration than younger adults
Increasing Your Water Intake
It’s really easy to increase your water intake. Try marking up a bottle with time slots so you can easily see how much water you need to be drinking throughout the day. Like with almost anything in our digital world, you can get an app to track how much water you’re drinking and to give you reminders to rehydrate. It takes barely any time out of your day and can have such important benefits to your workout programme and overall health.